A person admires a wall weaving depicting a topographic relief map of Orca Inlet, created by Ashley Taylor. Photo by Kinsey Brown for The Cordova Times

The Prince William Sound Science Center (PWSSC) is currently showcasing a fiber arts exhibit in the new building’s atrium titled “Stitch Your Science.” The exhibit, a community-sourced art show engaging with themes related to environmental and ecological resilience, prompted artists to create a piece telling a story about their personal experiences with climate change. Topics explored in submissions included data visualizations of glaciers, fish aerial survey imagery and temperature gradient mapping. 

Kate Trudeau, an education specialist at the PWSSC, led the curation of the exhibit and created the call for local artists to participate. Trudeau was inspired by a similar fiber arts display she saw at the Adirondack Watershed Institute in her home state of New York. She drew further inspiration from the Stitch Your Science digital archive, a nationwide fiber arts project available to view online, and thought Cordovan fiber artists and crafters would be interested in creating something similar locally. The exhibit debuted in May during the Shorebird Festival at the science center with about a dozen participating artists.

Trudeau feels that using art as a means of communicating can help draw together the connection between global issues and personal experience.

“Climate change is something that’s affecting all of Alaska,” she said. “People have a lot of feelings about it and art is a great way to work through your feelings.”

One example of the type of submissions displayed in the exhibit is a temperature blanket created by Lisa Docken. The blanket represents over a year’s worth of work and is knit with various colors that are representative of average daily high temperatures in Cordova.

Several high school students participated in the exhibit as well, using mixed media fabric and embroidery to depict their personal feelings about a changing climate. Other submissions included hand embroidery, weavings, a fur headband, and several small quilts.


The PWSSC education department has a goal of expanding its science programming to a larger audience in Cordova.

Until recently, the department has primarily focused on children’s activities and camps. But with the expansion of the department and a new, larger building, the education staff is looking for more creative opportunities for adults to participate in local science education as well.

“We are working on approaching science education from a multi-disciplinary approach,” said Trudeau of their efforts. “We want to access people who might have interests outside of science to meet a different audience.” 

Visitors will be able to view the Stitch Your Science fiber arts exhibit on display in the PWSSC atrium until Aug. 12. Afterwards, the art will be sent to the Valdez Museum and Historical Archive where the pieces are planned to be shown as part of a temporary exhibit.

Trudeau says she hopes to see a part of the display become a permanent installation in the PWSSC atrium in the near future.